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Great Reference Book But Woefully Incomplete
on August 4, 2013
ANA Grading Standards For U.S. Coins - Seventh Edition
This is a great reference book, but woefully incomplete. It appears that 13 years elapsed between the time it was written and the date it was published.
There are NO coins referenced that were minted in 2000 or later. No state quarters , no Sacagawea dollars, no presidential dollars, no silver eagles, no modern commemoratives at all. Will there be a volume two? Doubtful, but one can still hope.
For the present content, this is an essential guide book. It explains most of the available grades with photographs for circulation strikes. (Proof strikes are covered briefly, but no photographs or specific specimens are detailed.)
If you have loose, ungraded coins from the U.S. dated before the year 2000, this book can give you a good idea on how to grade each one. If you seriously want to try your hand at coin grading, pick up a grab bag of assorted coins from eBay or a local coin dealer, get a good magnifying glass,
(3x to 7x magnification) some good lighting, this book and have at it.
For the coins the book actually details, there are drawings and photographs pointing out essential "look for this" details. Also the are photographs of different grades for the same coin variety as a visual aid for grading your coins.
The book is actually spiral bound, with a hard cover attached. It will lay flat, when open; helpful when you are actually examining coins, to compare without needing to struggle to keep the book open to the correct page.
This guide needs to be updated to include the coins minted during the past 13 years to be useful for most collectors. If you want a reference that ends in 1999, this tome is nearly perfect.